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Mendhi hands by Pushpa Jain. Photographer unknown. All rights reserved.Fish decoy. Photo by Pearl Yee Wong. All rights reserved.Embroidered dress detail. Photo by Pearl Yee Wong. All rights reserved.Cedar bird by Glen VanAntwerp. Photo by Al Kamuda. All rights reserved.

The MSU Museum serves as a public steward for historical and ethnographic objects and materials documenting traditional culture of Michigan and the Great Lakes region. These collections are used for research, education, and exhibition projects.

Collections Overview

The repository of objects and materials documenting the traditional culture of Michigan houses archival and fieldwork research completed by staff, students, contracted consultants, and donations from individuals. The collections also contain comparative materials from all over the world. 3,000 objects, over 4,000 audio tapes of interview and musical performances, 85,000 photographic images, 3,000 fieldwork reports, and vertical files of reference materials on a variety of folklife subjects make up the collections.

Special attention is also given to collecting materials from annual Michigan Heritage Awardees and participants in the Great Lakes Folk Festival and the Michigan Traditional Arts Apprenticeship Program. The Michigan Traditional Arts Program staff strives to include community representatives in the planning process of projects or programs that result in the development of collections.

By further exploring this site, you can:

Learn about collections
Read guidelines on using materials
Read guidelines for donating materials
Read MTAP guidelines for fieldwork
View/Print/Save forms used by the MTAP

Our Services

Duplication services
Research assistance by email, mail or phone
Research visits
Rights and Reproductions

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